Small businesses view tax season through a year-long lens. Tax obligations tend to vary depending on your entity formation. There are several deadlines to meet for tax payments and necessary forms to file for employees. In addition, entrepreneurs may schedule meetings with tax consultants. Similarly, this will address any questions or concerns.
In short, looking at taxes over the course of the year allows small businesses to conduct tax year prep in advance. Here’s what small businesses should focus on each quarter and the necessary resources to make tax filing easy for every entity.
Quarter One (January, February, March)
Small businesses have several tax year obligations to meet within the first three months of the year. Begin tracking these payments, and 2021 tax deadlines, for your business.
1. Quarterly estimated tax payments.
Small businesses, like sole proprietorships and self-employed individuals, that owe $1,000 or more in taxes need to make quarterly estimated tax payments. As such, your business likely began 2021 by making its final quarterly estimated tax payment of 2020 which is due on January 15, 2021.
Quarterly estimated tax payments are made within four payment periods. The first one is between January 1 through March 31. The deadline for the Q1 estimated tax payment is April 15.
What if your small business is an S Corporation or C Corporation? If the business owes more than $500 in taxes for the quarter it is filing in, the business must also pay quarterly estimated tax payments. You may use Form 1040-ES for this specific filing.
2. Employer and contractor tax filing forms.
Do you employ employees at your small business? What about contactors? If you employ these workers, you must file their respective tax filing forms.
An employee will receive Form W-2. Independent contractors require Form 1099-MISC. Similarly, small businesses must submit these forms to the workers and IRS by February 1.
3. S Corporation tax return.
The deadline for S Corporations and partnerships to file their annual tax return, in 2021, is March 15. S Corporations must complete and file Form 1120S. Similarly, this outlines the S Corp’s financial activity throughout the previous calendar year.
S Corps also need to file Schedule K-1 with Form 1120S. This form shares the income, deductions, and credits of each S Corp partner.
4. S Corp tax extension deadline.
Does your S Corp or partnership need to file for a tax extension? S Corporations and partnerships may file for a six-month tax extension. The filing deadline is March 15.
Pro tip: meet with a tax professional.
In 2021, the IRS is accepting and processing 2020 tax year returns starting February 12.
2020 was a challenging year for small business owners amid the COVID-19 pandemic. While we cannot provide tax advice, fortunately, our friends at Block Advisors can be of tax assistance. Entrepreneurs with questions or concerns may schedule a consultation with Block Advisors.
Meeting with a member of Block Advisors provides a number of benefits to businesses. Scheduling a consultation early into the tax year allows entrepreneurs to learn how they can leverage every possible credit and deduction. In addition, you can find out more about tax services from Block Advisors. Start planning to file small business or self-employment taxes with Block Advisors and receive free audit protection as a MyCorporation client.
Quarter Two (April, May, June)
April 15, 2021 is a significant date for individuals and small businesses each tax year.
- Corporate tax returns. This is the deadline for businesses filed as corporations.
- Quarterly estimated tax payments. April 15 is the deadline for the first quarterly estimated tax payment made between January 1 and March 31 of Q1.
- C Corp tax extensions. Are you seeking a tax extension for your C Corporation’s income tax returns? April 15 is the last day C Corps may request a six-month tax extension.
Further, April 15 is the final day to make a contribution to retirement or tax -advantaged savings accounts, like a traditional IRA or Roth IRA.
The quarterly estimated tax payment period for Q2 starts on April 1. It ends on May 31. The second tax payment must be made by June 15.
(Author’s note: Tax Day in 2021 will be May 17. It is typically April 15. The change in dates is due to the unusual circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. Taxpayers now have extra time to for federal and state 2020 tax filings. Please note that estimated tax payments are still due on April 15.)
Quarter Three (July, August, September)
The third quarter of the tax year is critical for small businesses that were able to obtain tax filing extensions.
For instance, let’s say you were able to file for an extension on your S Corporation or partnership. The deadline for the extension is September 15. Make an appointment with Block Advisors to ensure your business is able to meet the deadline.
The third quarterly estimated tax payment deadline is coming up! Payments must be made between June 1 and August 31. The deadline is September 15.
Quarter Four (October, November, December)
The final quarter of the tax year is often busy for small businesses. However, it’s important that you do not forget any of these filing dates and considerations for your taxes.
October 15 is the deadline for an automatic six-month tax extension. You must file the income tax return for 2020 using Form 1040. After that, pay any tax, interest, and penalties on this date. In addition, corporations that have a tax extension must file their returns by October 15.
The fourth quarterly estimated tax payment also has a deadline coming up. Payments must be made between September 1 through December 31. The deadline for 2021’s final quarterly estimated tax payment is January 18, 2022.
In conclusion, it’s never too early to think ahead to next year’s taxes. Starting December 1, you may focus on making end-of-year tax moves. Start organizing your paperwork and gathering receipts! These small moves can make a big impact on your tax outcome in 2022.